MOSCOW, April 16. /TASS/. Nazism and Stalinism can’t be equalized, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday during an annual question and answer session officially known as "The Direct Line with Vladimir Putin."
"It’s impossible to equalize Nazism and Stalinism," Putin said. "Because Nazis directly, openly and publicly declared extermination of entire ethnoses — Jews, Gypsies and Slavs — one of the aims of their policy."
He added that "even taking into account the ugliness of the Stalinist regime, all repressions, exiles of entire nations, the regime never set the goal of exterminating entire peoples."
"The attempt to equalize these and those is absolutely ungrounded," Putin said.
At the same time, he admitted that predecessors gave a reason for such a comparison.
"After the Second World War, we tried to impose on East European countries our model of development and did it by force," Putin said. He said it was not good and is "keeps backfiring on us today."
"By the way, Americans are behaving in the same manner, trying to impose their model practically worldwide," he said. "They are in for a failure too."